Bryan Stevenson - Updated Feb 2024

Updated On February 12, 2024
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Bryan Stevenson

Bryan Stevenson is a social justice activist, lawyer, and law professor at the New York University School of Law in the United States.  Bryan Stevenson is also the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative based in Montgomery, Alabama.

Early Life

Bryan Stevenson was born In Milton, Delaware, United States on November 14, 1959. According to the astrological chart, his zodiac sign is Scorpio and he is currently 64 years old as of 2023. In addition, he belongs to the African-American ethnicity and holds US nationality.

His mother’s name is Alice Gertrude Stevenson and his father’s name is Howard Carlton Stevenson Sr. Moreover, his father grew up in Milton and his mother was born and grew up in Philadelphia. Later, his family moved to the city from Virginia during the Great Migration of the early 20th century.

Caption: Bryan Stevenson’s old photo and family photo (Source: NYU)

He has two siblings an older brother named Howard Jr and a sister named Christy. His father worked as a laboratory technician at a General Foods processing plant and his mother worked as an equal opportunity officer at Dover Air Force Base.

His family went to the Prospect African Methodist Episcopal Church where he and his siblings played piano and sang in the choir.

Bryan Stevenson – Education

He enrolled at the Cape Henlopen High School from where he graduated in 1978. He earned a scholarship at the Eastern University in St Davids, Pennsylvania after getting straight As in his school. Moreover, he completed his BA degree in philosophy from Eastern in 1981.

After that, he completed both a JD degree from Harvard Law School and an MA degree in Public Policy from the John F Kennedy School of Government in 1985.

Later, he received an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Ohio Star University on May 7, 2023. He also received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Whitworth University on October 5, 2023.

Professional Career

Bryan Stevenson moved to Atlanta after graduating from Harvard University in 1985. After moving to Atlanta, he joined the Southern Center for Human Rights full-time staff attorney. During this time, he defended Warren McClesky who was sentenced to death in 1987.

He served as the executive director of the “Alabama Capital Representation Resource Center” from 1989 to 1995. During this time, he represented convicts sentenced to capital punishment an organization funded by Congress.

Later, the government decided to reduce the funding for the Southern Center in 1994. He then decided to work independently to fight for the rights of discriminated groups and inmates in 1994.

Caption: Bryan Stevenson a lawyer (Source: American Law Institute)

In 1995, he established a non-profit organization Equal Justice Initiative (EJI), and served as the executive director for the organization. Moreover, he attempted to make the criminal justice system fairer and free of any prejudice through his organization.

He successfully reversed and reduced death sentences within one year while working with his organization. Additionally, he also helped Russian lawmakers in reversing around 800 death sentences during the Yeltsin era.

Besides that, he also worked with several law firms in Eastern Europe and also with Caribbean lawyers. He joined the clinical faculty of the New York University Law School in 1989. Currently, he works as a professor of law at the school. In 2014, he published his memoir titled “Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption”.

Additional Works

His book made a place in Times magazine’s “10 Best Books of Nonfiction” list and in The New York Times’ “100 Notable Books” list. His book received the “Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction” in 2015 and also the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

He became a member of the board of trustees at the Ford Foundation in February 2017. After that, he launched the “Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration” and the “National Memorial for Peace and Justice” in 2018.

Additionally, he is a public speaker and gave a speech at “TED” in Long Beach, California in 2012 Previously, he was a professor of law at the “University of Michigan School of Law”. Moreover, he delivered the Commencement address for Johns Hopkins University, Eastern Mennonite University, Ohio State University, and the University of Pennsylvania.

Net Worth 2023

This American advocate has garnered a good amount of money from his career. According to online sources, he has an estimated net worth of around $5 million US dollars but his salary is not available.


Stevenson received the Reebok Human Rights Award in the year 1989. After that, he received the “ACLU National Medal of Liberty” award in 1991. In 1995, he received the “MacArthur Fellowship Award Prize”.

Moreover, the “National Association of Public Interest Lawyers” named him the “Public Interest Lawyer of the Year” in 1996. In 2000, he received the “Olaf Palme Prize” in Stockholm, Sweden. After that, he was awarded the “SALT Human Rights Award” by the “Society of American Law Teachers” in 2003.

He received the “Award for Courageous Advocacy” the following year from the “American College of Trial Lawyers”. Moreover, he also received the “Lawyer for the People Award” from the “National Lawyers Guild”. He also received the “Distinguished Teaching Award” from “New York University” in 2006.

Additionally, he also won “The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Fred L Shuttlesworth Award”, “The American Psychiatric Association Human Rights Award”, and “Smithsonian Magazine American Ingenuity Award in Social Progress” in 2012.

He has received the “Lannan Cultural Freedom Prize”, “Thurgood Marshall Award”, “Martin Luther King Jr Nonviolent Peace Prize”, “NAACP William Robert Ming Advocacy Award”, and many more. In 2020, he received the Global Citizen Prize for Global Citizen of the Year. Furthermore, he received the National Humanities Medal in 2021.

Relationship Status

Bryan Stevenson is single and unmarried as of 2023. He has stated that his career is incompatible with married life and is a lifelong bachelor.

The American advocate is not involved in any kind of rumours or controversies. Moreover, he is a person who likes to help other people rather than a person who enjoys putting himself in controversies.

Body Measurements

Caption: Bryan Stevenson posing for a photo (Source:
The New Yorker)

Stevenson has black eyes and a bald head. However, his records about his height, weight, body measurements, and others are not available on online sources.

Bryan Stevenson – Social Media

The American advocate is only active on Instagram. On his official Instagram page ‘@bryanstevenson1959’ there are over 4.1k followers. Other than this, he is not present on Facebook and Twitter.